Pilot & Feasibility Grants


The New York Regional Center for Diabetes Translation Research (CDTR) announces the availability of Pilot and Feasibility (P&F) funding for research initiatives to generate preliminary data for extramural funding applications to address a diabetes-related translational research question. Proposal budgets for pilot funding are limited to $25,000 a year for up to 2 years, a 2nd year contingent on progress and available funding. Proposals are expected to use rigorous translational research methods such as: implementation or dissemination science, natural experiment methods, as well as quantitative or qualitative methods to assess interventions to improve diabetes prevention or diabetes care and outcomes at the individual, group, system or population level. Applications involving research in diabetes/obesity across the life span, population health, health systems, or natural experiments are strongly encouraged.  Secondary analyses of existing, pertinent large data sets that can lead to external funding are also welcome.

The CDTR website http://www.newyorkregionalcdtr.org provides information re: core resources and services available to awardees to support their pilot study. P&F funds may supplement ongoing funded research projects, but non-overlap must be clearly demonstrated in the proposal.

ELIGIBILITY. Recipients must hold the rank of Assistant Professor or higher at the time of the award. This program is designed to support (in order of priority):

  1. New investigators with interests in diabetes and/or obesity. In this category are junior investigators shifting from mentor-based research to an independent career. Meritorious proposals from new investigators receive priority for funding.
  2. Established investigators, in other research areas or cross-disciplinary research, who wish to apply their expertise to diabetes or obesity.
  3. CDTR members who wish to explore a new area of research that constitutes a substantive departure from their previous or ongoing externally-funded diabetes research.

APPLICATION PROCESS. Prior to submitting a full proposal, applicants must submit a brief Letter of Intent (LOI) of no more than 1-2 pages outlining the general aims of their proposal for initial review to ensure responsiveness to this call. LOIs are due on March 11, 2020 and should be emailed as an attachment to Josue.Alicea@einsteinmed.org.  Full proposals should: 1) clearly delineate the rationale and aims of the research; 2) describe rigorous study procedures; 3) include a data analysis plan; 4) describe use of CDTR Core resources; and 5) discuss how the proposed research will support a future application for external funding (NIH/NIDDK preferred), including a timeline. Ongoing in-kind consultation and mentorship from CDTR faculty are available to awardees. Pilot funding may be used to support PI or Co-I effort at a minimal level. Institutional indirect costs are not allowed. Awardees will present their P& F research at a “Works in Progress” Seminar and must submit a brief progress report each year.

No internal grant forms or approval signatures at Einstein are needed in order to submit an application. However, IRB approval is needed for protection of human subjects if funded; applicants should apply for that approval at the time the proposal receives a fundable score.

Required application components include: abstract, 2 year budget, budget justification, research plan (limited to 5 pages), literature cited, and NIH biosketches (including other support) for all key personnel. Provide these components as a single Word or PDF document. If PDF format is used, also include a copy of the abstract as a Word document. Please use selected NIH PHS 398 grant application forms, which can be downloaded from the NIH website: http://grants1.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/phs398.html.

Send proposals electronically as an e-mail attachment to Josue.Alicea@einsteinmed.org by May 4, 2020. The start date for funding of successful applications is anticipated to be late September 2020.

Questions concerning this program should be directed to NY Regional CDTR Directors:

Judith.Wylie-Rosett@einsteinmed.org or Elizabeth.Walker@einsteinmed.org


Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Do I have to be a CDTR member to apply?
    A. No, but P&F awardees are generally NY Regional CDTR members or are from institutions at which a CDTR member is based (see: http://www.newyorkregionalcdtr.org) when they are proposing to work in collaboration with or mentored by NY-CDTR members. Proposals will be considered from non-members who apply for membership if proposal will be funded.
  2. What CDTR core services are available to support developing my proposal and conducting my proposed research?
    A. You can find the CDTR Core services and contact information on the CDTR website: http://www.newyorkregionalcdtr.org.
  3. What other institutional resources are available?
    A. Institutional resources for facilitating research vary by institution. The Einstein-Montefiore resources are described on the website for shared facilities: http://www.einstein.yu.edu/research/shared-facilities/cores/4/biorepository/
  4. May I use the funding for biostatistical consultation?
    A. Yes. In-kind limited consultative biostatistical services are available, as feasible, from the CDTR.  At Einstein-Montefiore, consultation is also available via Walk-in Statistical Center Consultation Service available on the Einstein Campus every Tuesday 3 – 5 pm (Belfer Building, Room 1303 and on the  Montefiore Campus on the 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month 2-4pm, (3411 Wayne Avenue Room 824).
  5. What about patient care and lab test costs?
    A. Budgets should be developed in accordance with NIH policy regarding patient care costs. See https://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps_2012/nihgps_ch19.htm
  6. May I include indirect costs for institutional overhead?
    A. No, indirect costs (IDC) are not allowable for these limited pilot funds in our program.  If your grants administrater has IDC questions, please refer the questions to Jennifer.Renta-Barca@einsteinmed.org.
  7. Is it OK for there to be multiple PIs for pilot funding? 
    A. Yes, if an early-stage or mid-career investigator is working with another investigator in, e.g., a team science model, then an MPI situation may be acceptable. Please query the P&F program directors to check on appropriate PI models.
  8. What if I have a K award on a similar topic? 
    A. Your proposal should include a clear explanation of how the seed funding supports a different aspect not covered by your K award.
  9. What else is required of me should I be awarded a CDTR P&F grant?
    A. It is very important to note the various NIH NIDDK requirements for those studies that fall under the NIH definition of a clinical trial of human subjects (HS) for non-exempt research. See link to that definitionhttps://grants.nih.gov/grants/glossary.htm#ClinicalResearch

    These documents will be developed with support of the CDTR during the first 4 months of funding.  Requirements include:

    • Obtaining IRB approval
    • Developing a Data and Safety Monitoring Plan (model will be provided)
    • Creating a milestones chart to monitor study progress (model will be provided)
    • Registering the study on clinicaltrials.gov
    • Submitting planned enrollment and inclusion data in the NIH System